Webster 1913 Edition
A visible sign or representation of an idea; anything which suggests an idea or quality, or another thing, as by resemblance or by convention; an emblem; a representation; a type; a figure;
as, the lion is the.
symbolof courage; the lamb is the
symbolof meekness or patience
symbolis a sign included in the idea which it represents, e. g., an actual part chosen to represent the whole, or a lower form or species used as the representative of a higher in the same kind.
Any character used to represent a quantity, an operation, a relation, or an abbreviation.
☞ In crystallography, the symbol of a plane is the numerical expression which defines its position relatively to the assumed axes.
An abstract or compendium of faith or doctrine; a creed, or a summary of the articles of religion.
[Gr. [GREEK] contributions.]
That which is thrown into a common fund; hence, an appointed or accustomed duty.
They do their work in the days of peace . . . and come to pay their
symbolin a war or in a plague.
The persons who are to be judged . . . shall all appear to receive their
An abbreviation standing for the name of an element and consisting of the initial letter of the Latin or New Latin name, or sometimes of the initial letter with a following one;
as,See the list of names and symbols under
Nafor sodium (Natrium),
Fefor iron (Ferrum),
Snfor tin (Stannum),
Sbfor antimony (Stibium), etc.
☞ In pure and organic chemistry there are symbols not only for the elements, but also for their grouping in formulas, radicals, or residues, as evidenced by their composition, reactions, synthesis, etc. See the diagram of
Benzene nucleus, under
Syn. – Emblem; figure; type. See
Webster 1828 Edition
1.The sign or representation of any moral thing by the images or properties of natural things. Thus the lion is the symbol of courage; the lamb is the symbol of meekness or patience. Symbols are of various kinds, as types, enigmas, parables, fables, allegories, emblems, hieroglyphics, &c.
2.An emblem or representation of something else. Thus in the eucharist, the bread and wine are called symbols of the body and blood of Christ.
3.A letter or character which is significant. The Chinese letters are most of them symbols. The symbols in algebra are arbitrary.
4.In medals, a certain mark or figure representing a being or thing, as a trident is the symbol of Neptune, the peacock of June, &c.
5.Among christians, an abstract or compendium; the creed, or a summary of the articles of religion.
6.Lot; sentence of adjudication. [Not in use.]